Lost and found gems of politics


Why don’t we have friends like that? Like what?

The friend of Minister S. B. Disanayake, who gave him that gem worth Rs, 500,000, which he lost and then found.

Why bother about not having such friends, when the main thing is to celebrate with the minister at his great fortune. Finding this lost gem is part of his political story, which is a gem of its own kind.

Of course it is a specially charmed life to begin politics from the Communist Party in the tough days of the left, and come to a situation when you can have a ring with a gem worth half a million rupees.

That is what political luck is all about.

It reminds me of the Prime Minister of Malaysia, who is caught up is a huge corruption scandal.

Now why bring any corruption into this story of a hugely lucky minister? Are you suggesting that SB has the luck lined up to be a prime minister?

I don’t know about what luck is lined up for him, after the luck of coming to Parliament following defeat in the polls – which is certainly worth more than the value of that gem. But, why I referred to the Malaysian Prime Minister is because he says the many millions of dollars involved in his corruption issue came as a gift from a friendly member of the Saudi Royal family. It is the friendship that matters.

Don’t forget that SB is a man of gems, especially when you think of his gems in language, especially when he said how he would make a celebrated woman national leader strip naked and run on the streets. Of course that is a gem of the vulgar kind, but he is not very far away from gems.

Indeed, he had many gems of thought and language when he attacked university students demanding their rights, and showed he could shine in the field of Higher Education, as few other politicians who bashed Higher Education could. That was another gem in his career.

Also, don’t forget how much of a gem he was in the Rajapaksa camp when they were in power… and in the Rising with Rajapaksa days, too.

Has anyone asked the lucky minister whether this lost and found gem has been declared in his declaration of assets (there being no liabilities, ever)?

Come on, you must give a politician a chance. How can you expect a gift from a friend, whatever its value, to be declared in one’s assets. Politicians have so many assets, such as the constant ability to fool the people, the ease with which they can jump from of one end of the game to the other, the ability to keep close to the powers that be … how can any of this be assessed in terms of assets for declaration to the public?

Now that we know the value of this lost and found gem of SB, don’t you think the government should think differently about their hunt for undisclosed or wrongfully gained wealth?

Isn’t there enough of a hunt going on already? What with Mahinda Rajapaksa saying he will lead the country even if his entire family goes to prison, making it the height of prison politics. PRECIFAC seems to be still active, and there are stories about FCID probes every day…what more do you need?

But all of that is yielding so little … not much more than the headlines. So why not have a whole new unit – the L&FPoP?

Now what the hell would that be?

Simple – the Lost and Found Property of Politicians.

It can come under the IGP, going beyond the scope of the FCID. I think it will be a great source of revenue in these days of budget crisis and higher bread prices. The revenue is there for the asking.

How would this L&FPoP function?

Very easy; have specially staff, possibly trained abroad, to follow politicians, both in Government and Opposition. Just to keep track of what politicians lose – whether in the toilets of friends, in the special rooms of hotels, in the homes or rooms of business contacts or those making bids for government contracts – it is such a wide scope.

What will they do?

Knowing how forgetful politicians are about valuable gifts from friends, all they have to do is make sure the misplaced or dropped gifts, whether gems, jewelery, valuable artifacts, plundered archaeological treasures, or even bundles of foreign currency are found – and give it back to the politicians, with ten percent to the L&FPoP – and the assurance of silence. Just try and work out what that ten per cent would be worth.

Looks like it will be a song and dance for both Ravi Karunanayake and the Prime Minister. Why bother to ask the IMF for any loans – when we have the Lost and Found Assets of Politics? There could be great days ahead.

The logo of the L&FPoP could be a shining gem of great value, just to remind us that SB’s gem showed us the way.

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